King Triggerfish Attacks, Wounds Diver
A large triggerfish attacked a diver, hitting him in the head and causing a large wound on the scalp.
>I was attacked by a large king triggerfish while diving one of the reef sanctuaries just off the beach in the Philippines. The fish hit me hard in the head from behind. When my buddy/divemaster saw that I had a large bite wound in my scalp, we quickly aborted the dive. The divemaster and I skipped the safety stop and had the boat take us back to the beach, where an emergency responder was waiting.
>I didn't see the fish before it charged at me. It charged once, turned, and once more charged right at me before I could turn and fin away. I fended off the animal with my dive camera initially before it struck me in the head.
>The divemaster and several others in my group witnessed the attack. The divemaster applied pressure on the ascent, then I applied pressure with a towel while on the boat ride back to the beach.
>I was helped to a lounge chair on the beach where the resort emergency responder provided first aid and cleaned and dressed the wound. I was then taken to the hospital for stitches.
>King triggerfish are known for their aggressive behavior. Several divers with whom I discussed this case have experienced similar episodes, but nobody was really injured. However, this triggerfish behavior seems to be quite common, so divers should be aware of it.
>Triggerfish are very protective of their territory, and they will fight anybody and anything who encroaches it. To learn more about fish behavior, read these files: